Office of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing

MAY is Better Hearing and Speech Month & Mental Health Month

 

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Communication Access

Communication Access

Trainings for Service Providers
To request a training: cametrequest@dshs.wa.gov
Hearing Loss Awareness - A Common Problem for Older Adults

Communication Technology

Communication Technology

 

Community Outreach

Community Outreach

 
 

SLI Contracts & Resources

Sign Language Interpreter Contracts & Resources

 
 
 
 

Social & Human Services

Social and Human Services

Training & Presentations

Training and Presentation

Trainings for Community Members
To request a training: odhh@dshs.wa.gov

 

 

Quick Links

 

SVRS
 

Public Videophone
Available to Community Members
Outgoing Calls Only
9 am - 4 pm
Lobby Area
Blake West Building
4450 - 10th Ave
Lacey, WA  

 

 

 

 

 

For your information...

Hearing Aid Consumers

Click on this flier for information on wireless technology and hearing aids.


Medicaid Coverage for Hearing Aids Starts January 1

Approved by the legislature last year, coverage of hearing aids for adults on Medicaid will begin January 1, 2019.  The coverage limited, as it only restores coverage that existed before 2011, but it will give eligible adults some hearing aid coverage, where they have none at present.  People with 45 db or more hearing loss in their better ears will be eligible for one hearing aid.  This will be bundled with the hearing evaluation, ear mold and three follow-up visits to the provider.  New hearing aids may be obtained every five years.  Two hearing aids may be approved under certain circumstances and requires prior approval.

Cochlear Implant replacement and repair will also be covered and new CIs may be covered with prior approval. Batteries for hearing aids and CIs are not covered.

The WA Health Care Authority (HCA) is still developing the regulations for this coverage but will operate under interim "emergency" regulations until the final rules have gone through the internal review, public comment and adoption processes.  HCA will have a comprehensive web site with information including

Frequently Asked Questions

Contact: Jean Gowen, PA-C, MPH
Clinical Program Manager - Hearing Hardware Program

jean.gowen@hca.wa.gov


Did you know?

Hearing Loss Association of Washington (HLAA-WA)

HLAA-WA is affiliated with the national organization called Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA).  HLAA-WA has a website with information to learn more about the latest technologies available and how to deal with different communication strategies: http://hearingloss-wa.org/


Americans with Disabilities Act Resources

Overview of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

Americans with Disabilities Act (National Association of the Deaf)
https://www.nad.org/resources/civil-rights-laws/americans-with-disabilities-act/

(ASL Videos): Review of disability discrimination laws in ASL, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
http://www.adagreatlakes.org/ADA/ASL_Videos.asp

What is Effective Communication under the ADA?

ADA Requirements: Effective Communication (Dept. of Justice): https://www.ada.gov/effective-comm.htm

ADA National Network: Effective Communication: https://adata.org/factsheet/communication

Effective Communication: Health Care (Northwest ADA Center): http://nwadacenter.org/factsheet/effective-communication-healthcare

Health Care Providers (National Association of the Deaf): https://www.nad.org/resources/health-care-and-mental-health-services/health-care-providers/

Questions and Answers for Health Care Providers (National Association of the Deaf):
https://www.nad.org/resources/health-care-and-mental-health-services/health-care-providers/questions-and-answers-for-health-care-providers/

Employment Rights

Questions and Answers about Deafness and Hearing Impairments in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act (EEOC)
https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/publications/qa_deafness.cfm

Discrimination and Reasonable Accommodations (National Association of the Deaf)
https://www.nad.org/resources/employment-and-vocational-rehabilitation/discrimination-and-reasonable-accommodations/

ADA Information, Technical Assistance, and Training

Northwest ADA Center: http://nwadacenter.org/ 
800-949-4232
425-233-8913 (Videophone)
Email: nwadactr@uw.edu


Interesting Resources of Inclusive Public Events and Meetings

  • Like the Mic: This is a video campaign launched by Rooted in Rights and the Hearing Loss Association of America (HLAA) to bring awareness that life should be accessible to everyone, regardless of their ability to hear.
  • Closed Captioning: Information about the benefits and requirement of turning on closed captioning at public places.
  • New Seattle Law: Seattle will require closed captioning for TVs in bars, restaurants and stadiums.
  • Let's Loop Seattle: Advocacy to remove communication barriers and open doors to employment, public accommodations, state and local government services, transportation, and telecommunications.
  • Text to 911: Information about the status of Text-to-911 service across Washington State

Interesting Reads of ASL and Deaf Culture

Hearing Loss Information

People with hearing loss who are oral and do not sign are often left out of the opportunity to socialize as their local community centers and senior centers are not “hearing friendly.” That is, they often lack the technology or fail to use even basic amplification of their programs where people who are hard of hearing might participate. There is one place where we know that people with hearing loss can be welcomed and know that their communication needs can be met. This would be a local HLAA chapter meeting.

If you are interested in starting a local HLAA chapter or hearing loss support group in your area please contact info@hearingloss-wa.org and share your ideas. We’d love to hear from you.